Dynamic Talent, Dynamic Shows – Spotlight & On The Edge

Photo by David Cooper
RWB: Spotlight, Ballet Academic Program student. Photo by David Cooper.

The Royal Winnipeg Ballet School Professional Division (RWB School) will present dynamic talent in two brilliant shows for the 2022-23 season finale. Spotlight showcases the deepening of the Professional Division Ballet Academic Program students’ artistry, their breadth of talent and the young artists’ passion for the beauty of dance. On The Edge features the next generation of professional ballet dancers from the Anna McCowan-Johnson Aspirant Program, who perform diverse repertoire that will captivate and inspire. 

Spotlight - featuring La Esmeralda

Spotlight is a luminous collection of performances from the young artists in the Professional Division that serves as a culmination of their artistic growth. We are proud to present excerpts from the romantic ballet La Esmeralda in act one. Inspired by Victor Hugo’s 1831 novel The Hunchback of Notre-Dame, the ballet was originally choreographed by Jules Perrot to music by Cesare Pugni. Join us for a tale of love, jealousy, and revenge told through some of the work’s memorable variations. Our second act will feature thought-provoking pieces Manitoba Seasons from alumnus Philippe-Alexandre Jacques and Oh, the Places… from RWB School Resident Choreographer Gabriela Rehak, as well as the premiere of Rehak’s latest work co-choreographed with artistic faculty member Nicole Coppens and RWB Company artist Maggie Weatherdon. Technical excellence meets expert storytelling as these rising stars take to the stage.

According to Rafe Perry, an RWB School Professional Division student: “Spotlight is one of the highlights of our school year. This performance allows us to bring our hard work from the studio and showcase it on the stage. It is my favourite show of the year because the entire Professional Division Ballet Academic Program comes together to put on a dazzling performance. It is really fulfilling to be a part of something so grand!” 

RWB-On the Edge, Anna McCowan-Johnson Aspirant Program Student. Photo by David Cooper.

On The Edge 

Witness the exceptional talent of the Anna McCowan-Johnson Aspirants with On the Edge, a vibrant and intimate series of performances. This year’s performance will delight audiences of all ages with repertoire ranging from classical ballet to contemporary and neo-classical. Aspirants will perform excerpts from the classical ballet La Bayadère, and the charming and comedic Fairy Doll. The performance will also include world premieres by RWB School Resident Choreographer Gabriela Rehak, RWB School Artistic Faculty Maritel Centurion, award winning choreographer Lesley Telford, and guest choreographer, Portia Adams. Up-and-coming Anna McCowan-Johnson Aspirant, Myles Mackesy will also create a neo-classical piece. 

Vanessa Léonard, Director of the Anna McCowan-Johnson Aspirant Program summarized the heart and soul of On The Edge: “The Aspirant dancers are the young stars of the future, and their home is the stage. This performance culminates countless hours of training to perfect their art and show the incredible skill and versatility that they’ve worked so hard for. From the purity and virtuosity of classical ballet to dynamic contemporary world premieres, this performance will delight all dance lovers. Come and cheer them on as they grace the stage!” 

Spotlight runs from Thursday, May 25 to Saturday, May 27, 2023, at the Royal Manitoba Theatre Centre and On The Edge gets underway from Wednesday, June 7 to Friday, June 9, 2023, at the RWB Founders’ Studio. 

Reserve your seats today at rwb.org to experience dynamic talent and dynamic shows!

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